Bring the Outdoors Home

Japanese Painted Fern | Plant Profile

Japanese Painted Fern (Athyrium niponicum) are highly ornamental clumping-forming ferns with an arching habitat. The triangular fronds grow up to 20″ long. The fronds are variegated, meaning that multiple colors exist per frond, giving it a striped appearance. The centers of the fronds are dark green while the edging is a silvery-gray, creating beautiful contrast. The fronds turn from silver to green with warmer temperatures.

Japanese Painted Fern prefers fertile, medium moisture, well drained soils in part shade to full shade.

Japanese Painted Fern are suited to shady areas that can be used in a variety of landscape applications. They are ornamentally attractive enough to be displayed in landscaping near homes or along borders. Woodland gardens and stream or pond banks are also appropriate locations.


Japanese Painted Fern Characteristics

Japanese Painted Fern are easy to grow perennials that are best in shady, damp areas. While the soils should be well drained, they should never be allowed to dry out. Light shade is preferable for the best foliage color. Some shelter from heavy winds or snow is also appreciated. Japanese Painted Fern spreads by runners, or arms that reach from the base of the plant and occasionally root as they touch the ground. They can naturalize to create dense colonies or groundcovers if uninterrupted. If propagation is not desired, divide the plants in early spring.

There are few serious disease or insect issues that threaten Japanese Painted Fern. Rabbits are rarely attracted to the foliage.

USDA Climate Zone
Zones 3 - 8
1.00 - 1.50'
1.50 - 2.00'
Bloom Time
Part Shade - Full Shade
Deer Resistant?